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From our old friend.

Scientific Basis [Of Chakras]

The idea of chakras as understood in Eastern philosophy does not exist in medical science. In Eastern thought, the chakras are thought to be levels of consciousness, and states of the soul, and 'proving' the existence of chakras is asking to 'prove' the existence of a soul. A mystic deals with these occult concepts on the occult plane, as a model for their own internal experience, and when talking about 'energy centres', they are generally talking about subtle, spiritual forces, which work on the psyche and spirit, not about physical, electrical, or magnetic fields.

The primary importance and level of existence of chakras is therefore posited to be in the psyche. However, there are those who believe that chakras have a physical manifestation as well. Although there is no evidence that Indian mystics made this association themselves, it is noted by many that there is a marked similarity between the positions and roles described for chakras, and the positions and roles of the glands in the endocrine system, and also by the positions of the nerve ganglia (also known as "plexuses") along the spinal column, opening the possibility that two vastly different systems of conceptualization have been brought to bear to systemize insights about the same phenomenon. By some, chakras are thought of as having their physical manifestation in the body as these glands, and their subjective manifestation as the associated psychological and spiritual experiences.

Indeed, the various hormones secreted by these glands do have a dramatic effect on human psychology, and an imbalance in one can cause a psychological or physical imbalance in a person. Whether these changes in body state have a bearing on spiritual matters is a subject of dissent even among the Indian theorists, and the different systems of conceptualization, Indian and Western, make only a partial convergence in this case.

Perhaps the most psychologically dramatic and potent secretion of these glands is the psychedelic drug DMT (which is thought to be synthesized by the pineal gland, corresponding to the brow chakra).

(btw, I couldn't work out the answer to your life and death Go question.)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:38:28 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Did you count the liberties of all the groups? Attack the opposing group with the fewest liberties.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:42:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I assume you are responding to the Go question and not to the chakras. :-)
by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:47:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
To accept the concept of a soul, you also have to accept that there is a homonculus. If you accept the idea of a homonculus you donna know nosseeng - as someone here likes to put it.

You are sentient because of a process - a self-organizing process. When that process dies, because you die, so does sentience. It is unique and individual, confined to one continguous mass of neural connections, and is not transferable - to heaven, to hell, or to any other creature.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:52:34 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You must be replying to the wrong comment.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:55:56 AM EST
[ Parent ]
No, it's just an outrageous coincidence ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:57:54 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't see the connection of the soul to the homunculus, not do I see the need to postulate a homunculus if there is a soul.  

I see it more like a computer, there is hard- and the software and a programmer - but who is the programmer?

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:58:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The soul is a homunculus, I think. It is something unitary, external and conscious that animates the body.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:59:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Guess the computer analogy was not that great, but to me the soul is nothing external.

This is a topic refered to in Jyana Yoga, the intellectual yoga which has one of the main questions - WHO AM I? WHO or WHAT IS THINKING THIS? etc.  

by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:04:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Does the soul transcend the body, and if so how can it then not be "external"?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:08:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Can't it be both - internal and external (which are left-brain restrictions)- you know like energy being a wave and particle.
by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:11:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh, well, now we're getting into the issue of what makes an entity coherent and separate. Maybe I should write another QM diary on "what is a particle"? It could blow people's socks off.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:14:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And I will read it on bare feet, too.
by Nomad on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:18:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't think there is an agreed definition of the soul.  But I do have experience of something "I" could associate with that wasn't what I normally call "I".  It was a more encompassing concept.  This ties in, I think with the religious idea that we are absorbed into God--union with the Godhead.

I certainly agree with sven that the self (the conscious "I" that controls and makes constant decisions) ceases to be at death--and this makes it very unhappy.  I think aspects of our current civilisation promote and seek to expand the "I" (the selfish ego?), and I don't think this is a healthy road as this "I", of all things, is the one that is doomed to die.

It thinks of itself as a homunculus, but it isn't that, it is a rapidly connecting something something bicyle cycle home home...

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:09:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
the self ... ceases to be at death--and this makes it very unhappy

How can something that has ceased to be, be unhappy?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:10:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
that's what I like about this place ;-)

It's PNing of the highest order...

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:25:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's not PNing, it's an important issue when discussing death.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:27:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well I would have accused Socrates of PNing, so you're in good company

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:31:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
and every philosopher thereafter...

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:31:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Socrates was sentenced to death for corrupting young commas.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:35:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
lol

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:38:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
What makes the selfish-ego unhappy:

Through complexity it comes to see connections in a past-present-future tense system (Fran's left brain model), and so it realises that it will, necessarily cease to exist: die.  After death, it won't be there to worry, of course.  The dead are calm.  Those left behind are the bereaved.  But as it lives, this selfish-ego is at times overwhelmed with the idea of not existing anymore at some time in the future.  The more society promotes this selfish-ego, the more this unhappiness is spread about.

(Connections here to the potential extinction of humans--the horror!)


Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 04:25:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The solution is, then, to believe in life after death or the transcendence of the soul. Or else to come to terms with the finitude of experience. However, conscious life may actually have no end as we are not there to be aware of the end of awareness in the first place...

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 06:15:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, I think the most important thing is for the alienated "I" to reattach to groups beyond itself, whether they be other humans (community), nature, or 'beyond human experience' (transcendence--or 'ever more encompassing'.  I don't think the selfish-I ever comes to terms with the finitude of existence.  I don't think it was designed--Yipes!  No, there is no external desginer, there is sven's complexity creating designs against the left wall of viability etc.--anyway, the I is one of our survival mechanisms, I think.

However, conscious life may actually have no end as we are not there to be aware of the end of awareness in the first place...

Like going to sleep but without the dream--or the waking up?

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 04:09:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
However, conscious life may actually have no end as we are not there to be aware of the end of awareness in the first place...

Like going to sleep but without the dream--or the waking up?

Exactly.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 04:22:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Or like something being engulfed in flame...or incinerated...  It depends on the process of death.  Sudden. Whack!  Or slow s l o w  s   l  o   w

I don't think consciousness ends at death, but I think "self" consciousness ends at death...

The question then is: what is this consciousness that isn't the self, and who cares about it?  Which I would take as a comment by the self about its own extinction.  Yet there is a long historical cataloge of humans experiencing states which are, it seems, real but impossible to vocalise in prose.

I died from minerality and became vegetable;

And From vegetativeness I died and became animal.

I died from animality and became man.

Then why fear disappearance through death?

Next time I shall die

Bringing forth wings and feathers like angels;

After that, soaring higher than angels -

What you cannot imagine,

I shall be that.



Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.
by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 06:03:45 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A programmer is not needed, unless you believe that some other force was in action at the time the amazing foraminifera came into being. For me, and I think for current scientific understanding, it is a natural unfolding of complexity over billions of years. And only that.

The brain has always been interpreted by the prevailing technology of the day, whether a telephone exchange earlier or a computer today. (or indeed the 'magic' that was the 'technology', before technology)

Look at anything that grows (including the brain) - it certainly unfolds in a predictable manner, but is there a little man guiding it? Look at a flock of birds whirling round and ask who is the leader? There is none, just as there is no little man.

I'm not against the use of the word soul to describe a particular conjoining of neurons, or any of the other words like chakras. But they are only inadequate words to describe complexity.

And of course one can change this complexity in the brain by manipulating your neural networks - by meditating, studying, experience, exercises etc etc.

Perhaps the most extreme example of this is the Skene monks of the Russian Orthodox church. They choose this incredible discipline in order to completely cleanse their minds of everything before. They live alone, far away from the monastery. for many years. They have a shelter and a well. That is all. They 'chain themsleves' to the forest to survive. It is the simplest life of all and filled with constant prayer - and I am mean constant.

At the end of this process - which is slowly disconnecting old neural connections (literally), and reconnecting simplicity - the monk is incredibly pure. These are often the monks (so I've been told) that go out into the world to minister to prostitutes, criminals and murderers. They are so pure that they are untouched by anything they see.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:21:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Did you read At Home In The Universe?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:28:28 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I did, thank you. I found some of the maths a bit difficult, but there were many very interesting concepts there which relate to others things I've been looking at. If it was far better illustrated, I think it would be fantastic. For some of us it is easier to grab onto a visual.

Part of my work is translating complex ideas into visuals, and I find that rewarding because you cannot create the visual without understanding the concept. It motivates you to do the work of understanding, instead of being lazy.

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:37:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
And here I thought I was giving you a book with no maths...

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 01:00:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
who is the programmer

Now, now, you don't take Intelligent Design seriously, do you?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 12:30:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
But the Homunculus is one of the best Esoteric Jokes, played on the rich and gullible, which has somehow been taken onboard by some factions of religion to my amazement.

Any idiot can face a crisis - it's day to day living that wears you out.
by ceebs (ceebs (at) eurotrib (dot) com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 02:29:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
homunculus |h??m? ng ky?l?s; h?-| noun ( pl. -li |-?l?|or -les |-?l?z|) a very small human or humanoid creature. * historical a supposed microscopic but fully formed human being from which a fetus was formerly believed to develop. ORIGIN mid 17th cent.: from Latin, diminutive of homo, homin- `man.'

your opinion brooks no rational argument...

yet....it seems dismissive.

are you so sure of your self-organising sentience, that you can afford to sound so absolutist?

reading your confident assumption, i am tempted to assert that 'donna know nosseeng' might be the prime requisite for enlightenment.

your brain denies your soul, but perhaps it just hasn't found the password.

for such a pooh-pooher, you sure have touched my soul with many of your brilliant comments these last few months!

oddly perhaps, but 'homunculus' seems to describe a little imaginary mannikin, purported to be a homeopathically tiny version of the final product, into which it supposedly swelled.

enchantingly medieval!

but what has it to do with humans being ensouled?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 08:58:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
'Soul' just doesn't mean anything. It is a word that cannot be defined except under the Catch-22 rules of "If you believe it, it exists, if you don't you're damned''.

Now if you said the soul was 'aspiration' or 'hope', I might agree on the definition, because those characteristics could be logically seen as related to the survival of life - which I argue is what underpins all our actions in some way.

If you said that 'soul' was 'self', as in self-aware, I would accept that too. What I don't accept is that anything called 'soul' is transferrable beyond the physical limits of a brain (human or otherwise).

And I can't see why a 'soul' is needed for enlightenment or anything else. The brain is a fantastic thing that functions on a myriad levels.

Your use of the 'password' analogy is revealing - it shows you still believe that there is someone controlling everything - the homonculus.
YOU control everything. ;-)

You can't be me, I'm taken

by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 03:31:25 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What I don't accept is that anything called 'soul' is transferrable beyond the physical limits of a brain (human or otherwise).

You're thinking of the soul as a thing, then, as opposed to consciousness...which is not a thing, but a process?

I don't think I've quite got your meaning.

(I don't see how you can categorically state that processes of 'understanding'--sentience?--are held within the body...Jung's collective unconscious...

A friend of mine, a pure scientific rationalist, came to the conclusion that we do have a "race memory": he said we had two basic fears: of volcanos and of ice, coz those have always been the two that have wiped us out.  I'm digressing wildly.

But Ikernov Nussink.

So, you state categorically that 'consciousness' is the "I", a process created by complexity of a system, and disappears at the death of the complex system...?

(I'm thinking of, was it das monde?, who wrote about the consciousness of the planet.)

(My personal experience is that part of my "I" used to be a chinese town planner back in the seventeenth or eighteenth century...big towns, no cars, elegant structures but nothing showy.  Bloody drugs mate, rot yer brain...)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 04:19:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
wot braign?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:16:57 AM EST
[ Parent ]
What braign?



Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 06:06:49 AM EST
[ Parent ]
i'm  not going to fall for trying to define'soul'!

as for being damned if you don't believe...superstitious poppycock.

you're right about the password analogy, it does sound like i'm trying to get behind a firewall, and need big daddy's permission.

i meant it in a slightly different way.

watching a child teach itself to drag its body to the vertical position and learn to hold their balance is amazing.

the patience and willpower are awesome, and eventually, gradually, balance becomes second nature -until you get old and wobbly again.

forgetting yer password!

damn i used the analogy again...

i hope i didn't sound polemic, i intuit our pov's are neither exclusive, nor do they cancel each other out.

seemingly antagonistic perhaps, they are in reality complementary.

i heard when humans die, they suddenly become a few grams lighter.

not that i need physical proof, mind...

i love subjects like this.

mind over natter....

i suspect the soul will ever resist definition, will never cease to change, and will delight eternally in hiding in plain sight.

attempting to describe the ineffable is the source of all poetry.

if i was in control, i would not have to wait for anything, ever!

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:16:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
i'm  not going to fall for trying to define'soul'!

Then how are we supposed to carry out a conversation on it?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:23:31 AM EST
[ Parent ]
suppose it's real. the soul.

what would you like it to mean?

my guess is that every human would have a slightly or greatly differing opinion about that definition.

personally i'm working on the difference between 'spirit' and 'soul', and it's been years....aeons maybe...

i find 'spirit' to be more about the aspirational and devotional, e stretching for expression and refinement, 'soul' more about the unconscious, fertile, magmatic substructures of personality, and the emotional gestalt we discover sharing numinous experience.

if having a discussion about these things were only permitted to those who agree on definitions, we risk postulating prejudice instead of encouraging expression.

trying to define things is more fun than not, but these ideas  are written in water, not stone.

suppose....lovely word

suppose |s??p?z| verb 1 [with clause ] assume that something is the case on the basis of evidence or probability but without proof or certain knowledge : I suppose I got there about half past eleven. * used to make a reluctant or hesitant admission : I'm quite a good actress, I suppose. * used to introduce a hypothesis and trace or ask about what follows from it : suppose he had been murdered--what then? * [in imperative ] used to introduce a suggestion : suppose we leave this to the police. * (of a theory or argument) assume or require that something is the case as a precondition : the procedure supposes that a will has already been proved | [ trans. ] the theory supposes a predisposition to interpret utterances. * [ trans. ] believe to exist or to possess a specified characteristic : he supposed the girl to be about twelve [as adj. ] ( supposed) often |s??p?zid| | people admire their supposed industriousness. 2 ( be supposed to do something) be required to do something because of the position one is in or an agreement one has made : I'm supposed to be meeting someone at the airport. * [with negative ] be forbidden to do something : I shouldn't have been in the kitchen--I'm not supposed to go in there. PHRASES I suppose so used to express hesitant or reluctant agreement. DERIVATIVES supposable adjective ORIGIN Middle English : from Old French supposer, from Latin supponere (from sub- `from below' + ponere `to place' ), but influenced by Latin suppositus `set under' and Old French poser `to place.'

being able to control-click on a word and look it up in a dictionary in the blink of a dialup eye is like a new toy, sorry!

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:40:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
suppose it's real. the soul.

What am I supposed to suppose is real? You just give me a word with no meanings attached. What do you mean by "suppose the soul is real"?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:44:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
i gave you a word, i don't attach meanings to it, because it already has a meaning. it doesn't need me to give a new one.

perhaps it's like trying to describe the taste of a banana...yellow?

as you seem interested enough to reply, try skipping the first sentence and going to the second one.

If the soul existed and could be a value-addition to an onsouled life, couòd you care?

*or maybe your life is complete without 'going there', and you possibly think anyone who enjoys soul communion is merely deluded...

maybe there is a surrender needed to understand.

how about this?

critical thinking is crucial in life, all would agree hopefully.

are there times when excessive critical thinking might be an impediment to experience? has this ever been true for you?

perhaps you fell in love with someone your reasonable side urged you to avoid, for example.

or you made an apparently prudent decision, that later you regretted, realising it was fear, not wisdom that drove your choice.

perhaps 'soul' is like phlogiston or ether, handy terminologies till better ones, with more enquiry, arrive and take their place.

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 04:48:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Do you have a soul? Do I have a soul? How can I tell?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 04:50:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
i gave you a word, i don't attach meanings to it, because it already has a meaning. it doesn't need me to give a new one.

When you say "soul" do you mean this?

The soul ... is a self-aware ethereal substance particular to a unique living being. ... the soul is thought to incorporate the inner essence of each living being, and to be the true basis for sentience. In distinction to spirit which may or may not be eternal, souls are usually ... considered to be immortal and to pre-exist their incarnation in flesh.
from

[I find]  'soul' more about the unconscious, fertile, magmatic substructures of personality, and the emotional gestalt we discover sharing numinous experience

it wouldn't seem like you do. So does 'soul' already have a meaning? I have to admit I have no idea what you mean by "the emotional gestalt we discover sharing numinous experience", among other things because I don't think I have had numinous experiences as in

that which is wholly other. The numinous is the mysterium tremendum et fascinans that leads in different cases to belief in deities, the supernatural, the sacred, the holy, and the transcendent.
Or, rather, if I encounter mysterium tremendum et fascinans I don't feel compelled to believe in deities, the supernatural, the sacret, the holy ot the transcendent.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:01:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
if migeru were a selfreplicating bot-blogger, who got a perverse kick out of being an intellectual Ùber-brat, i'd venture that he had no soul.

because he evinces signs of humour, playfulness and compassion, i suspect he does.

but what do i know, i only play guru on the internet...

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:46:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It is so hard to extract a straight yes/no answer out of you. LOL

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:53:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
nature abhors straight lines

you do manage to extract elliptical ones!

bell that cat

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Thu Oct 19th, 2006 at 04:09:23 AM EST
[ Parent ]
if migeru were a selfreplicating bot-blogger, who got a perverse kick out of being an intellectual Ùber-brat, i'd venture that he had no soul.

Damn! I've been outed!

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 05:56:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Back to my old überTuring test. - a neurosurgeon operates on himself. It's the eipitome of feedback. And not a soul around for miles...

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 06:03:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is there such a thing as a pure definition?

It is a black furry animal.

Define black, define furry, define animal.

Does this process regress ad infinitum and take us to that diary you're about to write which I am looking forward to reading?

(Like Nomad, I will take my socks off first ;)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 06:13:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Is there such a thing as a pure definition?

If the word "soul" refers to something, what does it refer to? If it doesn't, what are we talking about?

If I ask you what a black furry animal is, you can produce one. You can, in fact, produce many different ones, which helps narrow down the essential features of "black furry animal". You can produce white furry animals, black naked animals, and black furry coats.

What is a soul?

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 06:25:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
If the word "soul" refers to something, what does it refer to? If it doesn't, what are we talking about?

I don't know.  I don't use the word.  My guess is that it doesn't refer to a "thing", nor does it refer to "no thing".  It exists in a language game called "spirituality", of which "religion" is a subset.

I don't think producing physical examples acts as a definition.  You produce something, I say, "Well, I can see it, but what does the word mean?  You point at the object and say, it means that.  "But what are you pointing at?" I say.  "This!" you say.  But what is that thing you are pointing at?  What are "black", "furry", "animal" etc?  Words to be used in a language game.  As is "soul".

The fun is to flip 'em around in the game and see what comes out.  I suppose refusing to accept that a word has a meaning is to refuse to play that language game.

Elf.  Pixie.  Hey, my daughter used to be a pixie and is now an elf.  (This happens to be true, but in which language game?)

So, the first thing to say might be "The soul is or is not a physical part of the human body."  Then the discussion can be about those missing grams.

If it is not a part of the body, the conversation could be, "So, does the soul survive the death of the body?" etc.

(P.S. I felt the hexagrams 23 and 20 referenced ET.  Indeed, without imagination what is a human?  Snarfle grap urgh Wittgenstien moments...language used to point to events uncontainable by language...the quote about language being a finger and the object of language being....referent and reference and referee...enjoy yer lunch!)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Wed Oct 18th, 2006 at 07:38:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The phenomenon was also know to the Alchemists. Paracelsus said that a medical doctor who doesn't know the planets is not a real doctor, the planets being symbols for the chakras. I would say integrating the idea of chakras in treatment could be considered a form of psychosomatic therapy.
by Fran (fran at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Oct 17th, 2006 at 11:46:00 AM EST
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